KING PHILIP'S WAR
Chapter 2, Part VI
It will be remembered that the credits for service were given at the close of such service, or at regular monthly or bi-monthly settlements. It often happened that the men would be separated from their officers, at garrisons on special duties, and so waiting the official signature the bill would be delayed sometimes for a year. Many who were in the Narraganset campaign were not paid off till the general settlement, June 24th, 1676. And though many of the credits represent later service, yet I judge the oftrepeated amount, ś02 14 00, represents the "Fort" campaign. This will hold in nearly every case, though not all. Thomas May was in that campaign and received no credit until September 23, 1676. The credits in other companies confirm this theory.
The forces under Gen. Winslow marched on the afternoon of December 9th to Woodcock's Garrison, and December 10th to Seaconk. From thence Capt. Mosely and his men sailed with Mr. Richard Smith across the bay, and then marched to his Garrison-House at Wickford in Narraganset, arriving in the evening, having taken a party of thirty-six Indians on the way.
Mr. Church relates that he went across to Wickford with Mr. Smith, but omits any mention of Capt. Mosely and his company, and their capture of 36 Indians in the march to Wickford, but tells of 18 that himself took with the "Eldridges and some other brisk hands." Church never omits to tell of his own exploits at full length. Mosely was the most popular officer of the army, and undoubtedly excited Church's anger and perhaps jealousy by ignoring and opposing him. Mosely, the successful captain at the head of a strong company of veterans, would not readily accept commands from one without title or company, whose best service hitherto had been only in scouting and skirmishing with small irregular parties. Church writes his own adventures. Mosely's can never be known fully, but what we have shows him to be brave, popular with both the army and at home, and wonderfully successful.
Gen. Winslow with the other forces ferried over to Providence, and marched through "Pomham's" territory, in hopes to capture that sachem, to the rendezvous at Smith's Garrison, on the evening of Dec. 12th. Mosely had captured one Peter, an Indian who betrayed Philip, and became invaluable to the army as a faithful guide, actuated probably by desire of revenge. On December 14th the General marched out with his forces to explore the surrounding country, and Sergt. (John) Bennet, with thirty men of Capt. Oliver's company, went out scouting, and killed two Indians and captured eight more.
On the 15th occurred a skirmish at a certain stone-wall, where twenty or thirty Indians discharged their guns at Capt. Mosely at once without effect. On the same evening the Garrison-House of Jireh (Jerry) Bull at Petasquamscot was destroyed, and seventeen persons killed, of which news was brought next day by Capt. Prentice's troop, and on the 17th the Connecticut forces, three hundred English and one hundred and fifty Mohegans, arrived at the same place, and on the 18th the whole force of Massachusetts and Plymouth met them there about 5 P.M. Bull's Garrison had been intended for the general rendezvous, and its loss was severely felt, as the army was forced to spend the entire night without shelter. At 5 A.M. the next morning, December 19th, they took up the march towards the Fort.
The story of the march, and the great battle at the "Swamp fort," is to be told in full in a subsequent chapter and so is omitted here.
Daniel Weld, chirurgeon, is credited ś10; is probably the Dr. Wells referred to in petition of Holman above. He was "Chirurgeon General," and was of Salem. There is a credit to George Thomas, Dec. 10, for "Chyrurgion Instruments for Dr. Weld and Dr. Knott" (Richard Knott of Marblehead). These were with the wounded probably, and also Dr. Philip Read, of Lynn, and Dr. William Hawkins, Boston. Mr. Hubbard states the number of Mosely's men killed to be nine, wounded ten. Whole number of English killed, above eighty, and one hundred and fifty wounded that recovered. He puts the number of Indians killed at one thousand warriors, and many of the aged and women and children. The troops returned to Smith's Garrison that night, and cared for their wounded; and Church relates that Mr. Andrew Belcher arrived that evening at Wickford with a vessel laden with supplies, without which there must have been great suffering.
In a bill presented by Capt. Benjamin Gillam, dated Jan. 19, 1675, is the item, "To charges on men to cut out Andrew Belcher's Sloop to goe to Narragansett, 14s."
The troops remained mostly inactive during the ensuing month, seeking to bring the Indians to terms of a permanent peace. There was some scouting and frequent captures, but no general action. Jan. 10, new forces were sent down from Boston, and the army was recruited to 1600 men, and on Jan. 27th began to move in pursuit of the Indians, who had now renewed their depredations. At last, in the early part of February, having pursued them around as far as Marlborough and Brookfield, they were forced to leave the pursuit for want of provisions and rest, and marched into Boston. On the 5th of February the Major was ordered to dismiss his soldiers to their several homes to await further summons. On February 15th, Capt. Mosely was ordered to march with his company to Sudbury, and there to abide till further orders.
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